For example, MonarchWatch.org has butterfly bush at the top of their recommended planting list, with no disclaimer that it’s listed as an invasive plant in over 20 states and counting, and also no instruction that if you’ve got this problematic plant in your garden, you MUST deadhead it before it produces the abundant seeds that are wreaking such havoc. It forms dense thickets, especially along river banks and gravel bars, which You can also plant drifts of tall native perennials. It has become increasingly clear that Buddleia davidii can be highly invasive. We all know the Monarch butterfly population is well below normal this year, and this is a big concern to all of us. They die back every year to the ground. Identification, … In other words, the butterfly bush is known to crowd out native plants that are essential to wildlife, including butterflies and birds. However, anyone familiar with the Midwest will quickly notice that Kansas IS identified on the illustration as being one of the states overrun by the subject bush. I would happily become a big fan and supporter of this otherwise worthy organization if this were to happen. Although butterflies will use this plant as a nectar source their larvae cannot survive on it. The thing is, people really want to help butterflies. I’m sure you’ve all read books about butterfly gardening, and almost every one of them recommends Butterfly Bush (Budleia spp). Why in earth would you suggest goldenrod as a replacement for a butterfly bush? It's worth noting, however, that the Butterfly Bush is considered an invasive species and can grow out of control rapidly if the right measures aren't taken. To address invasive plant problems, the city is now offering technical assistance with eradication techniques and will help with disposal (roadside pick up for projects). Buddleja davidii, commonly called butterfly bush, is a deciduous shrub that is native to thickets on mountain slopes, limestone outcrops, forest clearings and rocky stream banks in China. But did you know that Butterfly Bush is a highly invasive plant and is destroying native butterfly and wildlife habitat? * In zones 5 and colder it is not recommended for fall planting OR pruning. The real key to having more butterflies in your garden is to find out which of the more than 700 species of butterflies in North America are common to your region. Some states banned the sale of Buddleia and listed it as a noxious, invasive weed. Flowers Flowering occurs from May to August, when dense clusters of tubular flowers develop. Since its introduction to the United Kingdom from China in the late 1800s, B. davidii has become an important component in horticulture and human culture. A single flower cluster of Buddleia davidii 'Potter's Purple' can make up to 40,000 seeds! Eco-conscious gardeners would do better to opt for the native shrubs. It’s sad and shameful that organizations dedicated to the protection of butterflies, especially the Monarch, are spreading information that is ultimately harmful to our wild areas when there are so many better alternatives. If you can commit to religious deadheading, the butterflies and many other pollinators will thank you. Butterfly Bush blooms from mid-summer to early fall. Which have not multiplied anywhere on my property or down my road. Anyone who's ever tried to grow it from seed knows it almost never succeeds unlike butterfly weed (which is milkweed so I doubt the native-plant folks have an issue with it) and it's kind of a fraud for seed companies to even sell it! Buddleia (Buddleja davidii) is an invasive plant that is found throughout the United Kingdom, often seen growing alongside railway lines, urban wasteland and road verges. Butterfly Bush is a deciduous shrub that can grow up to 15 feet high. If a wildlife garden has a wide variety of native plants you’ll begin to discover that the butterflies actually prefer the natives and won’t even bother going to the butterfly bush. But educating the educators may now need to become my primary mission. In Why You Shouldn’t Plant Butterfly Bush, Debbie Hadley talks about the many harmful impacts this plant is having on our environment. Which will of course still need to be pruned: a garden is a managed environment after all. Buddleja davidii has been classified as an invasive species in many countries in temperate regions, including the United Kingdom and New Zealand. A common sight in our region’s gardens and landscape plantings, its fragrant conical blooms—typically festooned with fluttering butterflies and buzzing bees—are hard to miss. The germination rate is about 80 percent or above. The ecological impact of buddleia – is it really beneficial to wildlife; The biology of bamboo and how all bamboos can be invasive to some extent; Points of concern regarding bamboo in the built environment and domestic garden; Should contractors, clients, the media and legislators be taking buddleia and especially bamboo more seriously?. For more native plants that support a lot of butterflies at all stages of their lives see: The two authorities quoted are from different states: New Jersey vs. Kansas. How to Grow Buddleia To encourage the best growth and impressive blooms, your Buddleia will need a full sun position in well-drained soil. Why take a chance when there are so many better choices in native plants that butterflies will flock to that are much healthier for butterflies and also for our fragile ecosystems? Photo by Leslie J. Mehrhoff, University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org, 1 Hoffman's Mill RoadP.O. Goats can be helpful as a control method since they consume Butterfly Bush. 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